Prison Radio
Charles Karim Diggs

My name is Charles Karim Diggs. Our little subject matter tonight is, uh, what type of society do we want?

Are we willingly obeying a disease system? Every two years, we vote for legislators, and every four years we elect another president in the White House. We accept the result, even though the men always tell us lies to get our votes.

But part of the officials’ message that ae fulfilled is the law and order message. More police are hired, usually a hundred thousand police at every president election. They promise that. This means more prisons, more arrests. Our new president has targeted crime as a way to get favor with his constituents.

More police represents the negative part of our society. The reason why is that police are not equipped to deal with the social and economic ills that face the communities. America has the best arrests, highest conviction rate, the most severe punishment in the world. Usually mentally ill people do not know they are ill. Is there a possibility that the entire society is functioning under severe mental illnesses?

There were communities in history that represented serious questions of whether the society was sane. An example of several mental illnesses was when some nations began to execute women, call them witches all over Europe and other parts of the world. This is went on for centuries. We then had slavery. We justified that. We even use the Bible as a guide.

My point that I’m trying to convey to those who are listening is that perhaps we’re under leaderships in this country that are psychologically unfit to lead 320 million American. The prisons in Europe are nothing like thhose in America. They don’t keep people in prison beyond 15 years, even for murder. We should have enough courage to look at our system and begin to question, why are we playing war on everybody?

There’s war on welfare, war on drugs, war on the poor, war on the gays, you know, just war, war, war. And war is never a cure to the problem- to solve the problem in any way. Our country uses the most advanced minds in science and war. We have all types of energy and engineers and wealth, but we can’t solve the problem of mass incarceration.

We’ve created enemies among ourselves by labeling people criminals, misfits, terrorists. Now we have such a mass prison population. We really don’t know what to do with it. I suggest that we begin to look into ourselves and question our local leaders of national leaders: why is everything declared war upon? It just seems that we take it for granted that war makes us for some reason intelligent, makes us strong. I would suggest very strongly that we step back and decide what type of do we want?

These commentaries are recorded by Noelle Hanrahan of Prison Radio.